President fires Pikoli

2008-12-08 12:19

Pretoria - President Kgalema Motlanthe has decided against keeping Vusi Pikoli on as National Director of Public Prosecutions.

"I have come to the determination that advocate Pikoli should be relieved of his responsibility as the country's national director of public prosecutions," Motlanthe said at the Union Buildings in Pretoria.

Motlanthe said Pikoli's professional competence was not in question.

"However it should be noted that the requisite skills would necessarily include professional competence as well as those outlined by the inquiry, in particular appreciation for, and sensitivity to, matters of national security."

This comes after the release of the Ginwala Inquiry report.


Former president Thabo Mbeki suspended Pikoli on September 23 last year, citing a breakdown in relations between Pikoli and former justice minister Brigitte Mabandla.

Pikoli however said it was because his office planned to arrest National Police Commissioner Jackie Selebi for corruption. He said Mbeki was shocked when presented with the news that Selebi, who was also the head of Interpol at that time, was about to be arrested.

The inquiry was held in Johannesburg this year, chaired by former speaker of Parliament Frene Ginwala.

Matters that arose during the inquiry included a submission that Pikoli posed a national security threat.

He had to answer for the lack of security accreditation for his officials tasked with searching former deputy president Jacob Zuma's office during investigations against him and that he appeared to ignore a draft report alleging a coup to bring Zuma to power.

The prosecutions authority's entering into plea bargain arrangements with people involved in organised crime was also queried.


Pikoli also had to defend the line of communication between himself and Mabandla during crucial investigations when he believed that, although he had kept her informed, constitutionally, he could work independently of her when deciding on prosecutions.

Among those who testified were presidency director general Rev Frank Chikane, justice ministry director general Menzi Simelane, national intelligence director general Manela Manzini and senior Scorpions prosecutor Gerrie Nel.

Neither Mbeki nor Mabandla testified, but their correspondence on the Selebi matter formed part of the submissions.

Mbeki was asked to resign by the ruling ANC in September, partly because of a Pietermaritzburg High Court judgment. Judge Chris Nicholson questioned what he considered an inappropriately close relationship between the president, justice ministers and national directors of public prosecution in the long-running investigating into allegations of corruption against Zuma.

Mabandla was among Cabinet ministers who resigned when Mbeki left office.

  • Skande - 2008-12-08 12:28

    New president same circus....

  • Bokamoso - 2008-12-08 12:37

    i applaud the president for taking such as brave move, thats leadership at its best

  • Dries - 2008-12-08 12:43

    Congratulations are in order, JZ managed to get him fired. Kgalema showed that he is just a weak puppet of the Zumalites. Kgalema if you ain't good enough for 2008 then in 4 years you will not be the person for the job either! You are the weakest link, goodbye!

  • Dirk - 2008-12-08 12:44

    The plot only thickens...and I believe William Shakespear would have had a ball writing this modern day version of Hamlet!!!To quote :It provides a storyline capable of "seemingly endless retelling and adaptation by others"

  • Edward Mudau - 2008-12-08 12:44

    No reasons are given on your news clip but it is difficult to understand why the president has fired him.The report largely vindicates him and recommend that He be retained.I would believe the decion is ANC not the president.The current ANC has embarked in a cynical;paranoid purge of all the people it does not like.This will backfire badly.

  • G. - 2008-12-08 12:48

    It was said that Mbeki was covering for Selebi, so does it means that The new guy/president is covering for his Lord Zuma ?

  • ttt - 2008-12-08 12:48

    conspired against Zuma. Remeber mbeki saying he is relieving Zuma from his dutie because he will be charged?

  • jackey - 2008-12-08 12:48

    First the scorpions and now Vusi Pikoli..The only real crime fighting agencies and people are either being fired or closes down..Its a shame..Who will investigate the cabinet ministers ?The SAPS ? With a bunch of corrupt cronies thats about to take office ..I wonder if we are ever gonna hear them beign investigted for anything..Its quiet sad living in SA where corruption rules and crime fighting is on its way down...Shame on you "puppet" Mothlante!!!!

  • Frans - 2008-12-08 12:49

    It proves that the judicial system is this country is run by the ANC. Why bother setting up a commission, spending millions of the taxpayers money if the decision was already taken? Did the report not state Pikoli was fit for hids job? How much will his golden handshake be? Just asking...

  • Jaco - 2008-12-08 12:49

    Dear Skande, I wish to agree with you on this... A quick joke: The week before the 1994 presidential inauguration my dad drove us to Presidential Buildings in PTA. Hundreds of White Tents were pitched for all the "fans"... My younger brother asked my dad : "Pa, is die sirkus hier"... My dad replied "YES" I still tell that story today... How TRUE...

  • Jack - 2008-12-08 12:52

    Will this ever end!!!

  • Mzi - 2008-12-08 12:52

    Pikoli new he was working on a politically motivated environment... so it should not come as a surprise to him. when he was interviewed on a radio station, he made it clear that there is case against zuma and he will charge when he goes back to office. once again taxpayers will hav to dig deep as he signed a 10yr contract with the state. more millions in his pocket while joining mvelaphanda. it's just the game

  • The Truth - 2008-12-08 12:53

    Especially considering that to all intents and purposes it was believed that Ginwala found no evidence on wrongdoing on Pikoli's part.I wonder who leaned on Motlanthe into making this decision? I wouldn't be surprised in Selebi gets off scot-free now.If Yengeni could with his blatant drunk driving charge,then anything is possible.

  • Jairz - 2008-12-08 12:54

    So Thabo Mbeki is vindicated by Kgalema's action. This is very interesting indeed. I'm not convinced if ANC had a hand in this as they've been questioning the suspension of Pikoli over the Selebi investigation. I hope the President gives sufficient reasons for sacking Pikoli. Politics are a funny environment.

  • Zim - 2008-12-08 12:54

    Was this a direct order from Zuma ? Zimbabwe here we come... Leadership my #$&

  • Watcher - 2008-12-08 12:54

    Very interesting, considering that most expected that everyone chucked out by Mbeki would be on the JZ side. Good start Mr President. No doubt Mr Pikoli, with his "professionaly competence" not in doubt, he'll surelly soon get a more challenging job!

  • joe - 2008-12-08 12:54

    I am scared.... africa.failure by the commission to hear or interrogate the former minister and former president raises many questions as how to do you arrive at conclusions when some players are not asked questions, more over becouse we are going for the arms deal commission which should see Mr mbeki being interrogated becouse he chaired the BAC for the arms deal.

  • Mike A - 2008-12-08 12:55

    This shows that President Motlanthe is subject to the same "political" motivations that we are so weary of, and that he will distort truth and use lies of convenience.

  • sakhile - 2008-12-08 12:56


  • Ntokozo - 2008-12-08 12:57

    I thought only parliament can fire the NPA director after a hearing. Is this another case of the ANC dancing around our constitution?

  • Jessie - 2008-12-08 12:57

    What a joke our politicians have become... Pikoli is found to be competent and innocent and ens up being fired by the new ANC. For bucking the corrupt system? Motlanthe did not take long to show us his true colours. What a shame for our hopeful young democracy.

  • MKT - 2008-12-08 12:58

    The reason why Vusi Pikoli was fired is because his wife came in weekend newspapers ad publicly declare she was a COPE organiser ! What a good timing by the wife - unfortunately it cost the hubby his job.

  • Filemon - 2008-12-08 13:04

    And all of you who think jellyfish Mothlante will make a better president than zoooma must think again. they are both puppets in the same circus. ginwala and chikane proved their treachoury in their backtracking of investigations into the arms deal

  • Sgonondo - 2008-12-08 13:06

    Our president is a dead chicken. Might as well save us the niceties and make Zuma president so we deal with things as they are.

  • RUDOLF - 2008-12-08 13:10

    This was expected. It is not the first nor the last politically driven decision taken to make this country totally lawless. We will be an honorary member of darkest Africa very soon.

  • Michael Bowery - 2008-12-08 13:20

    Corruption is so widespread in this country now that it's a case of ruling politicos closing ranks and the result is that Pikoli has to go.

  • Michael Bowery - 2008-12-08 13:20

    Corruption is so widespread in this country now that it's a case of ruling politicos closing ranks and the result is that Pikoli has to go.

  • mpqho - 2008-12-08 13:20

    The firing of Vusi shows that the more things change is the more they stay the same. Guess our new public prosecutions boss will be Ngoako Ramatlhodi. Anyway turning my attention to Jaco's joke, if this is a circus, then what do you call the apartheid government? Dont bother replying. We lived in hell while you whites were living in what could be likened to heaven, a@our expense. One thing I know is that the current environment is much beta than wat d previous regime offered.Anyway who cares?

  • Mister b - 2008-12-08 13:24

    Proof that this country is run by comedians, this is the biggest joke if ever there was one.Kgalame prioved that he is a puppet with strings being pulled by the ANC. Secondly banana republic here we come, leadership with no back bone and only interested in pleasing those who can line their pockets through corrupt means. What is going to happen to people like Jackie Selebi - walk free????

  • Sharon - 2008-12-08 13:25

    Not surprising at all. All the ANC have done is changed the ringleader of this circus.

  • Skulliz84 - 2008-12-08 13:25

    "Give them guns and let them shoot each other..." PK Botha, 16 August 1985.

  • LG - 2008-12-08 13:27

    did you expect anything different? Yet another of Zuma's disciples. This country is going to hell and we can do nothing about it. I will be voting for COPE, it's the better evil of the two.

  • kleinfrans - 2008-12-08 13:30

    dear president Kgalema, if you were president for just one day, what would you do ? regards. Concerned citizens

  • ClearThought - 2008-12-08 13:31

    To Dirk and similar posters: Alright, Mbeki does not like Pikoli, then he fires him. Zuma/Motlanthe does not like Mbeki, he fires. Zuma/Motlanthe does not like Pikoli, then he effect the firing by Mbeki whom he does not like. Come on folks. From the above it "should" stand that Pikoli was neither "liked" by both. But where is the basis of either. Motlanthe's action means he is a "coward", so say some of you. In what way is he?

  • John Smith - 2008-12-08 13:35

    How on earth is the ANC going to deliver on Zuma's promises to reduce crime if they (the politicians) themselves are the main perpetrators of crime? Here they are clearly showing that they cannot tolerate any notion of abiding by the law whatsoever. Zuma keeps on moaning about not getting his day in court to clear his name yet he liberally uses taxpayer's money to make sure his lawyers PREVENT him from getting into court in the first place. With such a lack of conscience, I hope the ANC dies.

  • fatman - 2008-12-08 13:35

    The president should not be elected by the ruling party.

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